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Executive Director Position Profile

The Executive Director

The State Board employs an executive director who is responsible for approximately 240 staff
The executive director position is established by state statute to support the Board and provide leadership and general direction of Washington’s community and technical college system. 

The State Board has a tradition of substantive and innovative work and a highly motivated and skilled staff who strive to meet the evolving needs of Washington state and the colleges. 

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The executive director:

  • Represents the Board and college system to the state’s citizens, the executive and legislative branches of government, higher education institutions, K12, business, labor, industry, and state and federal agencies.
  • Provides political acumen and displays persuasion and influence with the Legislature, executive branch and individual colleges.
  • Provides visible, confidence-inspiring leadership, building relationships and reflecting the values and professionalism of the Board and the colleges.
  • Is an effective public authority on educational policy and service issues while valuing a collaborative process that builds coalitions and consensus.
  • Is a proven advocate for policies and practices that reflect the system's commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion.
  • Supervises staff and has overall responsibility for planning, administration and management of all programs and systems.
  • Brings leadership to the needs and issues addressed by the Board, while sustaining an effective and collegial team spirit and sense of humor.
  • Is responsible for preparing and advocating for system-wide budgets with the executive and legislative branches of government; disbursing funds and monitoring their use.
  • Serves as a member of several state agency boards.

Accomplishing these tasks requires effectively working with the Governor and Legislature, college and system leaders as well as State Board staff to forecast long-term system needs, facilitate long-term planning and strategies, provide adaptive leadership during periods of uncertainty, and organize the community and technical colleges around a common budget policy and capital agenda.

The Board seeks an executive director with commitment and an exceptional ability to articulate and advance our system’s vision and strategic plan. The successful candidate must have:

  • A Bachelor’s degree.
  • At least five years of senior-level administrative experience in community or technical colleges, other post-secondary institutions, and/or business, industry, government, or nonprofit organizations.  

The successful candidate must also demonstrate the following qualities:

  • A strategic thinker who leads with vision and brings a global perspective, deep insight and genuine passion for students and their education. 
  • A clear communicator who can persuasively articulate the need to support hard-to-serve and under-funded students.
  • A relationship-builder who creates and sustains partnerships that result in successful advocacy with the Governor’s Office, the state Legislature, state agencies, business and labor organizations, Congress and other state and national policymakers.
  • A skilled leader for a dynamic, complex college system who understands the challenges and opportunities of a federated college system that balances state and local decision making.
  • A trusted, calm and respected presence that unites people for a shared purpose despite competing demands, interests and personalities both within and outside of the community and technical college system.
  • An entrepreneurial and results-driven leader with a dedication to advancing our system’s work to advance diversity, equity and inclusion at a systemic level.
  • A leader capable of building an agile organization that adapts rapidly to political, cultural, demographic or economic shifts, or to other changes that compel our college system to quickly pivot.
  • An inspirational and effective manager who sustains an office culture steeped in agency values around racial equity and social justice, accountability, community and culture building, service, humor, collaboration and innovation.

Complete applications consist of a cover letter describing relevant experience, a demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, and interest in the position. A resume and three references with contact information are also required.

Confidential screening of applications and nominations will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. However, to ensure best consideration materials should be submitted by March 31, 2022.

Please submit applications electronically to  

Questions may be confidentially asked by contacting: 
Julie Huss, Director, Human Resources 

Applications and Nominations

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